Dinesh Gundu Rao, the in-charge of Congress in Goa, on Wednesday termed the act of MLAs who joined the BJP as ‘height of betrayal’ and ‘shamelessness’.
“People of #Goa voted for these MLA’s as they were @INCIndia candidates. They had sworn in front of temples, church & dargah that they will not defect to #BJP. They gave affidavits that they’ll always be with the Congress and took a pledge on the constitution,” Rao tweeted.
“Isn’t this the height of betrayal and shamelessness by @digambarkamat, @MichaelLobo76 and the others,” he further said while tagging Digamabar Kamat and Michael Lobo, who joined the BJP earlier in the day.
Former Chief Minister Digambar Kamat, Michael Lobo, Delilah Lobo, Kedar Naik, Sankalp Amonkar, Rajesh Faldesai, Aleixo Sequeira and Rudolf Fernandes are the eight legislators who have switched sides.
First attempt to join BJP was made on July 10, 2022, by these MLAs. However they had not succeeded in it. Even recently they tried again to make a number of eight, two-third, MLAs to avoid action under the anti-defection law. However, even the second time they couldn’t make their wish fulfill.
Dinesh Gundu Rao, on July 10, reacting to the first ‘attempt’ of defection, had attacked the BJP for allegedly offering money to the MLAs to split the party. “In spite of offering huge money, six of our MLAs have stood firm. I am proud of them. BJP was trying for a two-third split in Congress, so minimum 8 MLAs leave the party,” Rao had said.
“Many of our MLAs were offered huge amounts of money to switch parties. I can’t express, I am shocked about the amount of money BJP offered to them,” he had said.
Even Goa Congress former Chief Girish Chodankar had said that the BJP’s industrialist friends, mine owners and coal mafias were offering Rs 30 to 40 crore to the Congress MLAs to defect.
The Congress had removed Michael Lobo as the Leader of Opposition alleging that he was the one who hatched a conspiracy, along with former Chief Minister Digambar Kamat, by hobnobbing with the BJP to split the Congress.
After the latest defection, the Congress is now reduced to three MLAs.